WATCH: ‘Voetsek!’ Wildlife photographer tries to scare charging rhino away the South African way

Man on safari being chased by a rhino. Picture: Twitter

Man on safari being chased by a rhino. Picture: Twitter

Published Jul 13, 2023


If there’s one word that all South Africans know oh too well, it’s “voetsek.”

It’s a word one would use to aggressively tell an animal to go away.

This generally works for domestic animals like a dog or cat, but who would even bother to try it on a wild animal?

This wildlife photographer found himself in a rather dangerous position when he was confronted with a rhino bull while out on a game reserve.

The video of the photographer being chased by a rhino has found its way onto Twitter.

Originally posted by Peché Africa, the video captioned: “Imagine shouting voetsek to a rhino,” shows the person in a safari vehicle handling a camera with a large lens, clearly having taken images of a rhino in the distance.

All appears to have gone well until he started the vehicle and started reversing away from the rhino.

At this point, we hear him saying “Don’t even think about,” clearly referring to the rhino which seems to be approaching the car.

Speeding up and trying to get away faster from the charging animal, he shouts, “Hey voetsek!”

This of course does not stop the animal from approaching.

Did he really think it was going to work?

What does a wild animal like that possibly know about “voetsek”?

However, he continues to yell at the animal repeatedly telling it to “voetsek” as he tries to get away.

In a follow-up video we see that he eventually had to slow down and challenge the rhino instead as he continues to tell the animal to “voetsek”.

Clearly this worked because the animal eventually backed off and the driver managed to speed past it to safety.

— Peché Africa 🇿![CDATA[]]>🇦 (@pmcafrica) July 11, 2023

While the experienced might not have been funny for the brave man, tweeps are in stitches about him telling the animal to “voetsek”.

“South Africans and the deep seated belief that “voetsek” is the one word that all of Gods creature’s understand,” chuckled @KopanoMashishi.

@Travesty_Kruger commented: “This is why South Africans will struggle overseas. The animals there don’t know what Voetsek means.”

“This is the most South African reaction” said @Shalatheunicorn.

— Mtika (@SiceloDibe) July 11, 2023